Saturday, May 30, 2015

Pomerol And St. Emilion

On the Right Bank, I visited the small, but important subregions of Pomerol and St Emilion. The first stop was at Chateau Gazin, the fourth largest estate in Pomerol (which means it is quite small). As a nice gesture, they had raised the Australian flag for us. The soil here is clay, which means the waterholding capacity of the soil is much higher than on the Left Bank. The 2012 Chateau Gazin is 100% Merlot. Blackcurrant and plum flavours dominate on the palate. The wine has medium concentration and is a bit harsh on the finish. The tannins are firm, but quite fine. This is a wine which one should start drinking in a couple of years (89 points).

Not far away is Chateau Angelus, the famous St. Emilion estate. Another nice gesture: the bells in the tower were playing 'Advance Australia Fair' as a welcome. The family also bought the property across the road. So I first tasted the 2011 Chateau Bellevue. There are several wineries called 'Bellevue' in France, naturally. This one is quite small. The wine is 100% Merlot, with a deep purple colour. The wine tasted similar to the last one, but the dark fruit was more elegant. Not a very complex wine, but with pleasant soft tannins (91 points). The 2011 Chateau Angelus is quite different, although the winemaking style is the same. To start with, it has 40% Cabernet Franc included. The wine is full-bodied, but with lifted aromas. The Cabernet Franc adds spice to the flavour. The tannins are firm. Overall, I find the wine a bit dense and meaty, a surprise for 2011 (93 points).

The Bell Tower

Later in the afternoon, I tasted a few more Right Bank wines:

-  2010 Haut-Segottes (St-Emilion): redcurrant with lifted aromas. Elegant and the fruit strong enough to match the 14.5% alcohol. Soft tannins, medium finish (92 points).
-  2010 Chateau de Foubel (St-Emilion): full-bodied, with complex blackcurrant and mushroom flavours. Good length, but alcoholic and tannic finish (92 points).
-  2012 Chateau Canon (Pomerol): concentrated, but somewhat harsh and unbalanced (88 points).
-  2009 Le Bon Pasteur (Pomerol): weak palate, quite acidic with dry tannins (88 points).
-  2005 Chateau Pavie Macquin (St-Emilion): lifted and aromatic, cherry flavours, nice linear shape down the palate, with a fresh finish (94 points).

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